(BOSTON) — After 16 days of testimony from nearly 100 witnesses and several hours on Monday of closing arguments, jurors in Boston now have the case against Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
Judge George O’Toole sent jurors off to begin deliberations Tuesday morning, with a reminder they’re only to find Tsarnaev guilty or not guilty at this stage. The possibility of a death sentence must not influence the verdict.
Tsarnaev has pleaded not guilty to 30 criminal counts, but defense attorney Judy Clarke conceded his actions “deserve to be condemned.” She also urged jurors to consider the “varying roles” Tsarnaev and his older brother played. Prosecutors called that a distraction.
“They were partners and that makes them equally guilty,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Bill Weinreb said. Clarke told the jury, “If not for Tamerlan it wouldn’t have happened.” Weinreb responded, “To shred the bodies of men, women and children with a homemade bomb, you have to be different from other people.”
During deliberations, jurors are not sequestered and may have access to their notes. Scores of exhibits are available via a laptop and binders, but jurors do not have cell phones or other electronic devices during deliberations. They are, however, returned at the end of the day.
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